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I want to take some space in my newsletter to refresh us on the lives and contributions made to America by great Founders whose statues were toppled recently by violent leftist mobs. This week I want to focus on the Founder the rioters love to hate:  Christopher Columbus.
 
Although not the first European explorer to touch American soil, his discovery in 1492 of the islands known as the West Indies awakened the West to the Americas, a land that they had not previously known. Armed with his faith in God, an unbelievable amount of steely courage and dogged determination, and a superb talent for navigation and seamanship, Christopher Columbus dared to do what others couldn’t or wouldn’t – and succeeded. That is, he succeeded not in finding a route to the East by going west, but succeeded in finding previously unknown lands we now call America.
 
Many half-truths and lies have made their way into books and other media, some of which are used in schools and universities across the country. They have accused Columbus of being greedy for gold as his primary motivation for his voyages of discovery. His journal and other accounts disprove that accusation. He was motivated by his faith, his desire to open up new trade routes to Asia without having to go eastward, and his hope for economic opportunity to provide for his family and to give to the church. Not to say others weren’t motivated by a greed for gold, but that was not Christopher Columbus’ motivation.
 
Another accusation is that Columbus enslaved and committed genocide against all the natives he found. Records show that the only time Columbus fought against the natives was in defense or when called upon by those natives who were his allies. It is true that he made defeated natives slaves. The other truth is that he found the Native American tribes were conquering, murdering, enslaving, sexually exploiting, and cannibalizing each other into complete extermination. It is also true that Columbus fought against such horrendous and unconscionable practices wherever he could, even liberating groups of enslaved women.
 
Columbus was given charge of some men whom he could not control and they carried out horrible acts of violence which he did not approve or authorize. He was accused of abusing his power and oppressing both his men and the natives but was exonerated of all charges after examination. All of his rights and privileges were restored except for his position as governor. Clearly, he was not good at administration in positions of responsibility located on land.
 
Christopher Columbus was certainly not perfect in all his actions, but he is certainly not deserving of the degradation and condemnation he receives today. He has been acknowledged, appreciated, and honored for his achievements by people from all education levels, all stations in life and all over the world for well over 400 years.  I don’t believe we are more “enlightened” today than all these people. Although imperfect, he should continue to be honored today. We need to remember that we enjoy many blessings of America today because of Christopher Columbus.

Sandy Salmon

Author: Sandy Salmon